Lance Austin Olsen
Lance Austin Olsen (born 1943, London, UK) has represented Canada in a number of international biennials with his large-scale painting and drawings, which have been shown extensively in Canada and Europe. His working method is uniform across all of his mediums: a surface is endlessly reworked, with each subsequent piece forming a record or narrative of ongoing discovery. Often in recordings, sections of completed works are folded into new works in the same way that fragments of older paintings and drawings can be added into new paintings as a collaged element. Through this process, or matrix, the viewer experiences an inextricable link between the activity of producing the work as well as the sense that they are seeing but one element in a lifelong pursuit.
Olsen began working with sound in 1997 when he met the young artist Jamie Drouin, with whom he has continued to collaborate, releasing limited edition small run albums on their label Infrequency. Through this small label many contacts have been made with other musicians and composers that have formed alliances and new improvising colleagues, and in particular Gil Sansón.
Olsen started painting at the age of 15, when he entered London’s Camberwell Art School, studying under well-known contemporary artists Frank Auerbach, Euan Uglow and R.B. Kitaj. In 1968, Olsen emigrated from the UK to Canada, making his home in Victoria, BC, where he still resides. A constant creative flow emanates from Lance as he bounces back and forth between his two passions, art and music, one medium often influencing the other.